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From our News Partner at WCBD-TV:

Over the years, some people have had concerns that autism might be linked to the vaccines children receive. Dr. Catherine Chike-Harris, pediatric nurse practioner at Franklin C Fetter Family Health Center says that is a myth.  She says vaccines actually improve the lives of children.

"They (vaccines) are protection against measles, mumps and rubella and chicken pox and meningitis." Dr. Chike Harris said.

One vaccine ingredient that has been studied specifically is thimerosal, previously used as a preservative in many recommended childhood vaccines. However, in 2001 thimerosal was removed or reduced to trace amounts in all childhood vaccines except for one type of influenza vaccine, and thimerosal-free alternatives are available for influenza vaccine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention supports the IOM conclusion that there is no relationship between vaccines containing thimerosal and autism rates in children.

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